Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Call Me Crazy, Call Me a Wuss... I Don't Care!

Yesterday morning I woke up to bright, sunny skies and a slight breeze- a pretty typical morning. I was a little bummed to not be able to enjoy it, WAY too many errands and things to cross off my to do list was on my docket. However, as the day went on the clouds started to roll in, the breeze picked up and moisture filled the air. Suddenly I found myself putting on long sleeves and socks, turning off fans, closing windows and burrowing under a fleece blanket. I popped onto sure to see that the temp had dropped somewhere in the 60's. I mean I'm from St. Louis and spent 8 years in Chicago where 99% of the winter is well below freezing and full of that fluffy white stuff you call snow!! Well, it was 75... with a Real Feel of 72. WTH??

I felt vindicated by seeing several St. Thomas friends post on Facebook about how chilly it is- at least it wasn't just me! Many of those back home called us crazy and said our blood had thinned and it got me thinking. You always hear that your blood thins in warmer weather but does it? And, if so, why? What else makes your blood thin? Well, it's not all in our head folks- living on this island DOES make your blood thinner- for several reasons!

* Climate: a warm climate means more water needs to be carried in your blood and when you sweat more water is lost. More electrolytes are needed in warmer weather, again, lost through perspiration. Body activity is higher in warmer temps, your blood needs to be thinner to be carried through your body.

* Diet: foods high in Omega-3 actually thin your blood- fish is the main source of this. Seeing we live on an ocean or two, I'm guessing a lot of us eat our fair share of seafood. I know I do! Lots of herbs and spices are high in salicylates which also thin your blood. What down here is NOT seasoned with all sorts of spices??

* Alcohol: Bottom line is booze thins the blood. We all know how much of that is consumed here... which leads to:

* Popping Pills: I'm sure we've all seen the Bayer commercial where some guy has a heart attack and was saved because he popped an aspirin? Well, that's because aspirin thins the blood which is key during a heart attack. Know what else does? Iburprofen (Advil) and Naproxen (Aleve) which I'm guessing most of us reach for during those head throbbing hangovers. (Sidenote: Acetaminophen (Tylenol) does not thin your blood)

So there you have it folks. Call me crazy, call me a wuss- I don't care because I have science on my side :)